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Is there a computer lab at Hogwarts?

Discussion in 'J K Rowling' started by JoanDrake, Jan 3, 2016.

  1.  
    JoanDrake

    JoanDrake Well-Known Member

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    Or something like one? I've not read much of the wholes series (obviously) so I have to wonder if Rowling didn't put one in somewhere and I missed it.
     
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  2.  
    Anushka Mokosh

    Anushka Mokosh Matryona Marzanna

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    There deff wasn't one, but then again, Hogwarts keep changing and it is possible there is one. Perhaps Room of Requirements could provide one. xD
     
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  3.  
    Cli-Fi

    Cli-Fi Well-Known Member

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    Rowling has been quoted saying that the reason there is no technology or other gadgets at school is because magic interferes with electricity. Here are more computer references in Harry Potter literature: Computer
     
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  4.  
    Mad Alice

    Mad Alice From Earth; Mad House of the Universe

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    I believe that they have magic take the place of technology. Hermione and Dumbledore and Ron and Hagrid all go over this with Harry.
    So you would have to break down what a computer lab actually is and look for an nontechnological magical equivalent.
    Creating complex formulas for complex spells, would be programming.
    Using applications would be inputing known spells.
    Testing spells would be debugging.
    Developing magical items would be hardware.. (For instance a magical abacus. )
    Hermione mentions one possibility when she gives up on the fortunetelling class, Trelawney's Divination class.
     
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  5.  
    kythe

    kythe Well-Known Member

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    They don't appear to need or want computers, though computers are probably more efficient than some of their magic. But even though the magic in the Harry Potter world is very cool, I think our technology will fast surpass it. Magic appears stagnant. The popularity of many spells and charms comes and goes, and I'm sure combinations have always varied for differing results. But we do not see evidence that magic truly develops the way technology does.

    For instance, Hogwarts is an incredibly complex magical building created a thousand years ago. The Ministry of Magic is also old. Even though adaptations are sometimes made, we don't see "improvements" in the technology/magic used for more modern buildings. Witches/wizards rode broomsticks hundreds of years ago. They still ride broomsticks today. We walked or hode horses hundreds of years ago. Today we fly in airplanes - far superior to broomsticks.

    But the muggle world makes technological advances very quickly. What happens to the magical world when muggle technology completely leaves it behind?
     
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  6.  
    TheDustyZebra

    TheDustyZebra Breathe Staff Member

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    Well, the broomsticks come out with a newer, faster model every year. Consider the difference between a Cleansweep and a Firebolt.
     
  7.  
    Kylara

    Kylara Ghosting

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    Ah but you're forgetting the instateleport thing - portkeys? I don't know ;)

    My biggest issue is the loopholery - magicking a muggle thing is fine, but magic breaks electricity...so how do some of the magicked muggle things work? "magic" right....

    Personally I'd work on a spell that lets you ask the library for books to help with a specific project and that would then find the relevant page and quotation. (can you tell I've spent the day trawling through extracts trying to find relevant quotes for essays?)

    I want a mega broomstick made up of 50 firebolts and try for the landspeed (or would it be airspeed?) record ;)
     
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  8.  
    Cli-Fi

    Cli-Fi Well-Known Member

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    I love thinking about that possibility! Because we scifi writers tend to create worlds that are far superior in technological progress than even the so-called magic that is featured in Harry Potter. Even Harry's battles with Voldemort can be compared to Luke's battles with Vader, Harry Potter vs. Star Wars and a whole bunch of other things in the novel are very, very comparable to Star Wars itself or at least other elements in sci-fi.

    [​IMG]

    This is not to say HP is a rip off of SW. It's also not saying that HP is not original. It's very, very original and that's why it sold so well. People imagine that they can go to Hogwarts and I bet they want to go to school there more so than flying in the millennium falcon or becoming a Jedi. Hogwarts is considered a cool escape from real school. An escape from real school is something that EVERY child dreams about. I might hate it because I would be asking too many questions about how magic works, when in too many cases, they just simply reply, "Oh because magic!" Which is exactly the answer to this question that we have about computers.

    They don't really know why magic interferes with technology....
     
  9.  
    Ray McCarthy

    Ray McCarthy Sentient Marmite: The Truth may make you fret.

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    It's in one of the books too.

    Every electronics engineer knows about magic and electronics. When the magic smoke comes out of a device it stops working.
     
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  10.  
    Caledfwlch

    Caledfwlch I am not a Geek, I am a Level 20 Warlord!

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    In the HP World, Magic is not Stagnant. I forget the guys name, but one of the members of Prof Slughorn's "Slug Club" is mostly there because his Uncle invented a new kind of potion. Not to mention the Snape's "Half Blood Prince" Potions book, in which he appears to have invented a couple of new spells.

    I notice the most obvious way that Wizards use to get around not having Computers has not even been mentioned!! Hermione of course, takes "Arithmancy" lessons, which sounds like some sort of magic based system for making complex calculations and so on.
     
  11.  
    Anushka Mokosh

    Anushka Mokosh Matryona Marzanna

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    I think we all have those dreams about Arithmancy, but JK revealed it is about forecasting and not much complex maths is involved.
     
  12.  
    Caledfwlch

    Caledfwlch I am not a Geek, I am a Level 20 Warlord!

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    I don't think the Magical World needs something akin to a Computer anyway - their technology like almost any world with a magical system is stuck far enough in the past that all the Server Farms in the world could do little to help in their daily business.

    Me and my brother have always had an argument about magical worlds - his position is that technology simply cannot exist beyond medieval era in a world with magic, like me he is a big fan of the Thief Games, and our heated debate started because he was a little unhappy that Thief 2: The Metal Age featured steam powered clockwork "robot" guard devices and alarm systems as he felt those were beyond the ability of a world with magic.

    I think the logistics of JK's world make far more sense than any others, though I actually think she is one of the few authors I have read who actually stopped to think about a potential relationship between magic and technology. In any of the fantasy novels I have ever read, there has never been a place where all humans had magic, therefore it would make sense that those living without would continue to evolve their technology, hence JK's earth has a medieval magical society living amongst the tech of late 20th century Earth.
     
  13.  
    Ray McCarthy

    Ray McCarthy Sentient Marmite: The Truth may make you fret.

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    I'm with you.
    Most original "magical" stories (myths & legends) are written with tech contemporary to the period of the writing.
    Mediaeval folk in reality (and ancient Babylonians, Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, Indians, Chinese etc) had far more tech than is obvious from an uneducated reading of the stories.

    They knew about some things they didn't make for mass consumption because the economics was wrong or it was too much bother to purify the materials needed.

    Reading Glasses existed long before 1450s. The Printing press caused a boom in glasses production, which led to cheaper optics and thus microscopes and telescopes.

    A magical world of fairy folk might have compatible GSM/3G cell phones fitted INSIDE their hazel wands. Magical locks instead of PIN on phone and password on laptop.
    Genetic Engineering AND Shape changing magic.
    Electric Cars, but the autopilot is magic rather than LIDAR, sensors, cameras, GPS and computers ...
    Perfectly ordinary aircraft. Have you tried using an umbrella on a broomstick?

    You are limited only by your imagination and knowledge of technology.

    I agree that Hogwarts, or J.K. Rowlings' magic world conception doesn't need tech. The magic newspapers sound like eInk.
     
  14.  
    Caledfwlch

    Caledfwlch I am not a Geek, I am a Level 20 Warlord!

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    Aye, JK's Wizards and Witches get around tech by simply devising magical versions - it's also good to remember that Magic in the Hogwarts world is also constantly evolving, whilst Magic in many literary universes appears to be Static - for example in the "Slug Club" is that chap who's uncle invented a new kind of potion, and whilst I don't know for sure, Snape appears to have created the "Levitate Body" spell as the spells, and alternative potion creation recipes appear to be his own work, in the Half Blood Prince's copy of the Potions book.

    Hogwarts is one of the few universes that even explains why Magicians have to use older technology - because Magic inteferes with electricity, which makes sense, since magic is clearly a form of Energy.

    It's why I have become a fan of a little subgenre called "Gunpowder Fantasy" where a world with Magic has advanced to reflect the 18th/19th century with Muskets and so on.
    It just does not make sense to me that in a world with magic users and non magic users, the non magic users would be stuck in the past with their technology - if Mages are going to use Magic to replicate what non magical users have/can do, then it also makes sense that Non Magic Users will in turn advance science & technology to try and replicate what Magic Users have. In the Thief games, the clockwork steam technology was created by non magic users.
     
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